Prof Ianthi TSIMPLI

Co-Principal Investigator

Prof Ianthi Maria Tsimpli works on language development in the first and second language in children and adults, language impairment, attrition, bilingualism, language processing and the interaction between language, cognitive abilities and print exposure. Her doctorate thesis was published in 1996 in the series Outstanding Dissertations in Linguistics, Garland with the title Functional Categories and Maturation: The Prefunctional Stage of Language Acquisition. She has extensively worked on the case of Christopher, a polyglot-savant, with Neil Smith (UCL) with whom she co-authored the book The Mind of a Savant: Language Learning and Modularity (1995, Blackwell) as well as a number of journal articles. A number of articles and book chapters co-authored with Neil Smith, Bencie Woll and Gary Morgan as well as the book "Signs of a Savant" (2010, CUP) have also been published on a subsequent research project investigating Christopher’s ability to learn British Sign Language.




Research Interest

Literacy and cognition
First and Second Language Acquisition
Language Disorders

Key Publications

Google Scholar Link

Tsimpli, I. M., & Dimitrakopoulou, M. (2007). The Interpretability Hypothesis: evidence from wh-interrogatives in second language acquisition. Second Language Research, 23(2), 215-242.

Tsimpli, I., Sorace, A., Heycock, C., & Filiaci, F. (2004). First language attrition and syntactic subjects: A study of Greek and Italian near-native speakers of English. International Journal of Bilingualism, 8(3), 257-277.

Smith, N. V., & Tsimpli, I.-M. (1995). The mind of a savant: Language learning and modularity. Blackwell Publishing.